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PIA Press Release
Monday, January 09, 2012


DOH prioritizes health infra in Mindanao

by Mai Gevera-Macapagat

DAVAO CITY , Jan 9 (PIA) – The health department has announced ninety percent accomplishment in the building and development of district hospitals and rural health centers in Mindanao.

Health Undersecretary Dr. Romulo Busuego told the Davao media that the Aquino Administration has prioritized the establishment and development of health facilities especially in Mindanao.

Since 2011, around 1,500 rural health centers were put up to cater to the health needs of Filipinos specifically in the barrios.

A budget of P7 billion was allotted by the national government for health infrastructure development alone.

However, Busuego admitted that these improved health facilities won’t serve well the target beneficiaries when patients still opt to be treated in regional hospitals or big hospitals in the city.

“ This is when we urge the local government units to invest on training programs so that the human resource in provincial and rural health centers can be at par with the medical doctors in the regional hospitals,”he said.

Busuego added that part of the regular programs of the DOH is the constant training program that invites medical doctors from the provinces to learn from the experts.

The official also stressed the priority of the national government in providing the poor financial risk protection. Nationwide, 10.5 million Filipinos are targeted to have Philhealth insurance cards.

In Mindanao alone, 2.5 million Filipinos identified by the Department of Social Welfare Development (DSWD) may avail of the No Balance Billing Policy of the Philhealth. Not even a single centavo will be asked from them even if they have excess charges in the hospital or medical bill.

“ Before, the national government didn’t allot a budget for health insurance program in the local level since local government units were devolved. But this time, you will notice that the national government allocates a budget along with the respective budgets provided by the provincial government, house of representatives, and mayors, he explained.

The government is also eyeing to double the premium contribution of Philhealth members so as to increase coverage and elevate the support value of the Philhealth benefit, he added.(PIA/Mai Gevera-Macapagat)

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